As Mass Retirements Loom in Federal Agencies, Jive Provides Institutional Memory

How Government Agencies Can Preserve Knowledge Even When Employees Leave

As a record number of federal employees near retirement age, many government agencies face a potential brain drain. Jive helps ensure that even when workers leave, their knowledge stays.

Nearly a million federal employees will become eligible to retire this year. That leaves many agencies facing a potentially unprecedented loss of knowledge and experience.

Systems like the Veteran’s Health Administration’s “VA Pulse” collaboration system are helping to stem the tide. VA Pulse, powered by Jive, captures and preserves the work of VHA clinicians and administrators, making it visible, searchable and shareable. Massoud Rabie of Reingold, which managed the implementation of VA Pulse, explains how Jive can provide much-needed “institutional memory” for a federal government in the midst of massive change.


So the Federal Government is going through a period of tremendous change. There have been no shortage of headlines in the news that I’m sure we’ve all seen and heard about. But there’s an untold story underneath that, that isn’t being talked about in the news, and that’s the fact that today, there are 2.7 million Federal employees who power over 100 Federal agencies with a combined budget of $3 trillion. Over a third of those employees, nearly 1 million strong, are eligible to retire over the next quarter of this year.

That is decades of experience. Unimaginable volumes of corporate memory and corporate experience that are going to essentially be walking out our Federal Government halls. So what that leaves is a tremendous vacuum. A vacuum of decades of knowledge and experience. And what we’ve seen in examples like VA Pulse [the Jive-powered collaboration platform used by the Veteran’s Health Administration] is that bringing in platform that can create a collaboration ecosystem and organization can not only help surface decades of knowledge and experience and wisdom, but it can also help systematize it and democratize it in a way that you can create true corporate memory and a true institutional knowledge – knowledge that can be used and will serve the greater good, well beyond any presidential transition and into the next.

It boils down to people. It boils down to people being able to connect with one another, to drive change, to create a human connection, a connection that’s tied to a mission, whatever that mission may be. And the possibilities for driving that change through a collaboration platform like Jive are limitless. And frankly, we’re just scratching the surface.